Router Bit for Cutting Reel Seat Mortices

Hi Everyone,

I often get the question of what router bit I use to cut the mortices on my wood reel seat inserts on my bamboo fly rods. I’ve found one that works pretty well from Rockler (, a Convex Edge Rounding Bit…Item No. 22597. I also had another question about how I hold the reel seat insert to make the router cut. I’ve come with a simple solution….I’ve routered a 5/16″ slot in a piece of melamine, and then notched out the area where the insert is held. I put the insert on a 5/16″ threaded rod, which then fits down into the slot in the melamine. The edge of the melamine can then slide on the router table fence to make the cut.

Convex Edge Rounding Bit
Finished Reel Seats
Reel Seat holder for cutting mortices on a router table.

4 thoughts on “Router Bit for Cutting Reel Seat Mortices

  1. Hi Dave,
    Thanks for the post.
    I have found the difficult item to figure out is the fixture to hold the material for cutting the mortise. Could you elaborate on that as well?

  2. Thanks Dave,
    I made a fixture but ruined several reel seats and was deathly afraid of losing a finger or two in the process.
    Tricky business. Either cut too deep or off center.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *